So I've had time to cool down, reassess, and pray lots, and so I guess it's time to post a rational assessment of last Friday's happenings. Recall that I went on a retreat (retiro) with the youth from church, and we had plans to meet at the train station at 6.30 pm and go south. So I left work at 5:45 to go home, take a shower, shave, finish packing, and take the metro to the train station. When I got to my apartment, I noticed my bed was a little ajar from my wall and that the power cord for my internet connection had been unplugged. Not thinking too much of it (I sometimes get a little active during the night with my tossing & turning...), I plugged the router back in and pushed the bed back against the wall. Then I noticed that my laptop computer was not beside my bed where I had left it that morning. Also missing were my headphones & the power cord for the computer.
It was then obvious that someone had picked my lock sometime that day, entered my apartment, took my laptop, power cord, and headsets, and then let themselves back out. They didn't seem interested in anything else (or didn't have time to look around so much), so the only things stolen were computer-related. To say I was shocked would be underestimating my emotions. I felt betrayed, violated, and overwhelmed by what I had lost (several items not backed up included 3 yrs of digital photos, financial info, contact info, spreadsheets containing months of dissertation research, my blog bookmarks, and so forth...) I felt used because of my "gringo-ness" (the consensus amongst my colleagues at work was that I was targeted...) and perceived wealth. I no longer feel secure in my own apartment, reasoning if "they" can enter once, what will stop them from entering again? Also I've been frustrated by being suspicious of everyone around me ... my neighbors, the concierges, other people in my building --- as if they were the robber(s). Of course they could be (the police sergeant said he gives very high chances to the concierges and/or cleaning people being involved, as they have access to the building), but I like most of them and want to continue building a relationship with them.
So, I ended up taking a later train to the retreat (only 2 hrs late as it turned out), and had a very good time relaxing, making new friends, and thinking and praying. As a side note, we split up into 4 teams Sat afternoon and had several relay races. One of them, my team chose me as the "strongest", and thus their task was to be the quickest to dress me as a baby (bonnet and bib), feed me a jar of carrot baby food (it wasn't disgusting, but not tasty either), give me my bottle (thankfully juice and not milk!), burp me, give me my passifier, and sing me to sleep. We won - kinda - and besides, it was really fun!
Now that I'm back in Santiago, I'm deciding what to do about my apartment (I've changed my locks). I don't really want to move (my colleagues counsel me that moving will not diminish the threat of being robbed), but I still immediately look around every time I come back to my apartment to see if it has been disturbed again (that paranoia and "loss of innocence" is at least as lamentable as the financial loss of the laptop itself).
In other much less depressing news:
- yesterday (Wed.) I connected with a few guys to play ultimate frisbee! Only 3 of us showed up (this week is a holy / holiday week because of Easter, so people's schedules are different), so we only tossed the disc around. Nevertheless it was amazing and I had a great time. My friend Felipe lost his disc afterwards though, which is a major bummer. We might play again on easter sunday, in the afternoon, which would be very cool. I am hoping to find some people who live closer to me to play (yesterday's practice was 40 mins from my apartment... 25 mins with metro and 15 mins walking).
- according to ESPN's international broadcast schedule, they will air the final four and championship games here in Santiago. Woohoo! Now if only UNC can keep up their end of the bargain. I envision watch parties, food, and some difficult explanations of the rules of basketball (in spanish, of course), should that come to pass :-)
- I'm going back to the USA next week for Mary Beth's wedding (MB is my cousin on my dad's side of the family). It'll be great to see the family again, since I think our last time together was during thanksgiving. I'll arrive on Tue and come back to Chile the following Monday.
That is all from here. Have a happy Easter!PS- if you were a regular blog reader of mine, and you have your own blog, can you drop me a comment, or an email (address way at the bottom of this page) reminding me of your link?? All my blog links were lost in the theft. Thanks!!